Newspaper headlines: May clings on and Rooney’s punishment – BBC News

The Times

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“May fights to get a grip,” is the front page headline of the Times. It says Theresa May is presiding over a government in a “monumental mess” and could be forced from Downing Street by the end of the year.

The Guardian

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The Guardian says MPs will tell Mrs May next week to sack Boris Johnson and “shake up her cabinet” to reassert her authority. It says many backbenchers “remain furious” about Mr Johnson’s recent behaviour.

The i

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The i newspaper says the PM is still clinging to power “for now”. It says there is “open warfare” within the Tories and that MPs calling for her to stand down will now “regroup and try again before Christmas”.

Daily Express

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The Daily Express, however, says the prime minister has “crushed a plot to oust her”. It says a “ruthless operation” to discredit opponents has secured her position.

Daily Telegraph

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“Back-room talks” between EU negotiators and Labour leaders have “significantly” increased, according to the Telegraph. It says the EU’s Brexit negotiators are concerned Mrs May’s administration will collapse before the process is complete.

The Financial Times

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The Financial Times also focuses on Brexit. It says Germany and France have dashed British hopes of fast-tracking talks on a two-year post-Brexit transition deal, insisting the UK’s EU divorce bill be resolved first.

Daily Mail

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The Daily Mail says wealthy families are exploiting the government’s help to buy scheme. It says four in 10 beneficiaries of the scheme, to help first-time buyers, since 2013 were earning more than £50,000 a year.

The Sun

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The Sun has a photograph of footballer Wayne Rooney carrying out community work on its front page. The ex-England captain, who was caught drink-driving last month, was seen painting park benches, the paper says.

The Daily Mirror

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The Daily Mirror labels Rooney “the garden centre worker” on its front page. It quotes “a source” as saying the Everton striker “enjoys” the community work as he “likes getting his hands dirty”.

The Daily Star

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It could be 1966 all over again, according to the Daily Star, which says England has been lined up to host the 2022 football World Cup following a report questioning whether Qatar can still stage the games.

Most of the papers reflect on the attempt by Conservative backbenchers, led by ex-party chairman Grant Shapps, to oust Theresa May.

The verdict of the Daily Express is “Theresa slaps down rebels”, reporting that the prime minister appears to have secured her position, thanks to a “ruthless operation” to discredit those seeking to undermine her.

The Daily Mail agrees.

Under the headline “rout of the pygmies”, it says the plot to remove Mrs May “collapsed into a shambles yesterday” as MPs and ministers united to condemn what it labels “the betrayal of rivals seeking revenge.”

The paper also offers its readers pen portraits of the “traitors gallery” of senior Conservatives it says are part of Mr Shapps’ attempted coup.

The paper’s columnist Peter Oborne says Mrs May must “destroy her Tory enemies before they destroy her”.

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However, even if the rebellion has been seen off, doubts about the prime minister most definitely remain for some.

“PM clings to power – for now” is the i newspaper’s take.

Meanwhile, the Sun endorses Mrs May, but only because – as its editorial puts it – “there is no obvious replacement”.

Until one emerges the Tories must unite behind her, the paper says.

The Financial Times urges the PM to sack lacklustre members of the cabinet and bring in new talent. The FT concedes that it is a strategy that carries risk, but, it says, “she has nothing to lose.”

The Daily Mirror laments that at a time when the nation is crying out for strong leadership, it has been left rudderless by a “top of the flops” prime minister.

“Britain deserves much better than these incompetent Tories,” says its leader.


The Daily Mirror reports on another beleaguered leader: Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary.

The paper says it has seen a letter to Mr O’Leary written on behalf of his pilots, responding to his “grovelling” pledge to improve their pay and conditions.

In it, the pilots accuse their boss of “considering us nothing more than aircraft parts”.

One pilot tells the Mirror that Mr O’Leary’s offer was “the ramblings of a desperate man”.

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One of the most successful glossy magazines of recent years is ceasing its monthly print edition and going online, the Times reports.

Glamour’s decision to go “digital first” is the result of tumbling sales and alarm about the future of beauty and celebrity titles.

The Financial Times says there is in fact a broader challenge to the magazine industry.

It says it’s partly the result of the “abundance of free news and entertainment” available on the internet – and also a “changing of the guard” at some of the world’s top titles.

It cites the retirement of Vanity Fair’s longstanding editor, Graydon Carter.

The FT quotes the founder of Rolling Stone, which in another sign of the times was recently put up for sale.

He says “publishing is a completely different industry than what it was.”

‘Emulsional’ Wayne

It could be worse, though, as various long-lens photos of Wayne Rooney doing community service at a garden centre attest.

It follows his conviction for drink-driving last month. He’s been painting park benches at the centre.

“Tired and emulsional”, is the Sun’s headline.

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To avoid the glare of publicity, Wayne Rooney could perhaps have benefited from the new England rugby kit, which, as the Daily Telegraph reports sceptically, “purports to use state of the art camouflage technology to mask player movement”.

An expert in visual perception doubts the manufacturer’s breathless claim and points out that in any case, any advantage gained from the design is counteracted by the fact the shirts have a large, highly visible advertiser’s logo in the middle of them.

The Telegraph says fans have grumbled that the replica strip costs £95 and it is the eighth new kit in the last three years, meaning that, transparently, it is merely a “revenue raising stunt.”


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